1. Guillermo del Toro - Mama, The Devil’s Backbone, Splice
Guillermo del Toro, the movie’s director, penned The Devil’s Backbone when he was in college and has gone on record saying that this is his most prized work. The story is based on his own childhood memories, specifically his relationship with his deceased uncle, who supposedly came back as a ghost. The director’s other horror credits include 2009’s Splice and 2013’s Mama.
3. Sam Raimi - Evil Dead, The Grudge, Drag Me to Hell
Raimi is known for his distinguishable style of horror. His main characters are often subjected to a humorous style of pain à la The Three Stooges, the majority of his films contain scenes through the eyes of the villain, and he includes his yellow 1973 Oldsmobile Delta 88 in his films any time he gets the chance.
4. Gore Verbinski - The Ring
The film that redefined the importance of “7 Days” won the 2003 Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films awards for Best Horror Film and Best Actress for Naomi Watts.
5. James Wan - Insidious, SAW, The Conjuring
The terrifying mind behind half the SAW series and this summer’s The Conjuring is about to release the much anticipated follow up to 2010’s Insidious.
6. Eli Roth - Hostel, The Last Exorcism, Cabin Fever
Roth is one of the few Directors who can back up his genius with numbers, having never lost money on a film. 2002’s Cabin Fever racked up 15 times its budget in theaters, Hostel (2005) made 20 times its budget, and in 2007 Roth’s biggest budget film to date, Hostel: Part II, earned triple its cost.
7. Tomas Alfredson - Let The Right One In
The Swedish thriller, which tells the story of a bullied boy who finds comfort and revenge through a vampire, was Empire Magazine’s 2008 movie of the year. This is the first time a foreign movie topped the list since City of God in 2003.
8. Jason Blum - Insidious, Paranormal Activity, Sinister
Jason Blum’s Blumhouse Productions has revolutionized the horror industry by producing micro-budget full length films for wide release. Following the success of the Paranormal Activity series and 2013’s The Purge, Blum has just wrapped production on the second installment of 2010’s Insidious.
9. Ridley Scott - Hannibal, Alien, Prometheus
Ridley Scott is known for pitting strong female leads, including Sigourney Weaver, Julianne Moore, Winona Ryder, and Noomi Rapace against some of the most terrifying monsters of the horror genre. In honor of his “substantial contribution to the British film industry,” Scott was knighted in 2003.
10. Jaume Balagueró & Paco Plaza - [Rec]
The 2007 P.O.V horror film has been credited with flawlessly executing the Blair Witch Project style of cinematography. The story follows a television reporter and cameraman who get trapped in an apartment building with something terrifying while covering a story. While shooting, none of the actors received full scripts so that they would not know their character’s fate until the last possible moment.
11. Drew Goddard - The Cabin in the Woods, LOST, Cloverfield
Goddard, the man who wears many scary hats, directed 2012’s The Cabin in the Woods, wrote 2008’s Cloverfield and its upcoming untitled sequel, and produced several seasons of what might be the most thrilling TV series of the last decade, LOST.
12. Frank Darabont - The Mist, Frankenstein, The Walking Dead
The Mist is Darabont’s third Stephen King film adaptation, after The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile. His dedication to preserving the story’s authenticity was put to the test when certain movie studios wanted to change The Mist’s ending, but Darabont refused to give in to their pressure. Other credits include the star-studded Frankenstein and the most horrifyingly addictive drama on TV, The Walking Dead.
Inspired by James Wan and Jason Blum’s Insidious: Chapter 2, out September Friday the 13th.
Bring a friend, you’ll need a hand to hold.